Crossandra is a flower that belongs to the acanthus family. Her closest relatives include such representatives as pachistachis , ruellia , afelander , etc. She is not often found among the composition of flower growers, since she does not forgive the gross errors associated with her departure. Caring for a crossandra is not so tricky, but not significant deviations can lead to the fact that the flower begins to lose its decorative effect.
In nature, and this is the Arabian Peninsula, Madagascar, etc., about 50 species of crossandra grow and only two of them have taken root in room conditions - it is varenky and prickly, and prickly is not so common.
Crossandra care at home
Location and Lighting
Crossandra, whose homeland is Madagascar, loves a lot of light. The most suitable place for it may be the eastern and western window sills. She will not refuse from the south, but she will have to darken a little so that direct sunlight does not fall on the plant. As for the northern windows, there she will feel uncomfortable, develop poorly and a beautiful decorative plant will not turn out from it.
Crossandra has taken root in the conditions of individual rooms and the daily temperature of such premises is absolutely acceptable for her. It is very important that there are no sudden changes in temperature, otherwise it can lose leaves. In the summer, its temperature regime can be in the range + 22-28 ° С. In winter, temperature + 18 ° С will be normal for her .
Watering, humidity, top dressing
In the summer, she needs abundant and regular watering. In winter, watering is somewhat reduced, but is carried out regularly, otherwise crossander can lose leaves. Water, while soft and thawed should be used. The best option is rain or snow water. Watering should be carried out very carefully so that water can not get on the flowers and leaves of the plant, otherwise they will begin to chase. It is better not to spray it, but to maintain the necessary humidity in other ways. If spraying is carried out, then the moisture should resemble the form of fog: drops should be as small as possible.
In addition to regular watering, crossander needs to be fed. This should be done with complex mineral fertilizers at least twice a month. The lack of trace elements negatively affects the development of the flower. He will certainly lose his attractiveness, and this is not what is expected of him.
In winter, when the plant is at rest, it is not necessary to feed the crossander. But there are times when this flower continues to bloom in the winter, then top dressing is simply necessary for him.
Young crossandra flowers need to be replanted annually. In the first 2-3 years of life, the plant actively grows and develops, including its root system. Therefore, during this period it is advisable to transplant it every year. After the plant has strengthened and its crown will be formed, the crossander can be transplanted once every 2-3 years. The substrate for this plant is prepared in combination with leaf and turf soil, peat, sand and humus in the same proportions. Crossandra loves fertile, nutritious land, which ensures her normal growth. At the same time, it is necessary to organize high-quality drainage, because the flower requires abundant watering, and any moisture retention will adversely affect its development.
Crossandra propagation occurs using cuttings. This procedure can be carried out throughout the summer. The technology of reproduction is similar to the technology of propagation of many colors: the cut stalk is placed in a bowl with water, where roots will grow on the stalk for one month. After this, the stalk can be planted in the ground, unless, of course, it is sufficiently developed.
Crossander can be propagated by seed, but this method is rarely used by anyone. Even experienced flower lovers do not use this method.
In order for the flower not to lose its decorative effect, it should be trimmed a little. In early spring, plant shoots should be cut to half their length. To prevent the flower from growing up and dissolving more side shoots, pinch the tops of all shoots. In this case, the crown of the flower begins to form actively. As a result, it will be beautiful, lush and attractive, and this is just what is required from an ornamental plant.
In other words, from how they will take care of and care for him, the flower will be so beautiful. But do not forget that all this requires a lot of time. If there is such a willingness, then you can safely plant at home such a wonderful flower as a crossandra.